Early March days at the Pass

The days were rolling by, and it was hard to believe March was already upon us. After an epic 5-day powder filled hut trip, I was scheduled to patrol on Saturday and it looked to be a great day with lots of fresh snow on the hill. I headed out early with Carson, and we made it to the Pass early to get ready for the day (Shaun was off duty for the day hanging with friends in Sunriver).

The Saturday crew ready to open EPA

Our morning meeting went smoothly, and soon the crew rolled out to open EPA and Twilight. I opened Timburr, and it was probably the best run I’d had at the Pass all year, with 15-18 inches of light, deep, cold smoke. At the bottom, I checked  my watch and it was a few minutes past 9:00, so I grabbed Carson from the family room and we headed out to take a few runs.

Carson ready to head out for some turns
Carson, Althea, Hannah & Ian on the EPA chair

Skiing blue runs with Carson all morning while the conditions were so good definitely took a bit of restraint, but I’m hopeful it will pay dividends in the future when he’s ripping double blacks in the same conditions. We spun a couple of laps on EPA, and then headed over to Peak 2 and checked out Waldo, which was skiing quite good….

Carson skiing Waldo
Gretchen and Jenn in a big line on Peak 2

At the bottom of Peak 2, the line was huge, and even though I was hill chiefing, I stood in it with Carson since he’s not on patrol yet. While waiting, I loaded a sled for Gretchen, then hopped back in line. About 20 minutes later we made our way to the front of the line, and then enjoyed a run back to the patrol room where the crew was getting food out for our Saturday potluck. There was a smorgasbord going on by the time we got there, and I could tell it was going to be nice!

Lydia, James & Emily enjoying a P2 potluck

We grabbed several types of goodies from the offerings on the table, enjoyed lunch with the company of a few patrollers, and then headed back out for some more turns. Carson wanted to ride EPA so we headed up and spun a few more laps…

Ready to head back up EPA
Matt & Carson at the top of EPA

At the top, Hannah, Ian and Matthew were putting in some hours finishing up training with Michael, and I snapped a few photos of them enjoying a fun moment in the snow, before having to deal with a radio call from dispatch.

OEC training at the top of EPA

For the rest of the afternoon, I put the camera away and made turns with Carson. There were several incidents that needed management, but we made it to sweep without too many issues. After clearing the mountain, it was nice to enjoy a cold beer as well as some tasty bean dip and good company in the patrol room. All in all, it was another great day on patrol, and after reviewing incident reports, signing duty cards and locking up, Carson and I headed out.

The following weekend, I was back on duty for Sunday, and this time I had Shaun in tow while Carson had other engagements. There was a little fresh snow, but it was nothing like the week before. We arrived early as usual, held the morning meeting, and then opened the mountain.

James & Gretchen at the saddle closure
James & Emily on KP

After opening, but prior to lunch, I spun a couple of laps with James and Emily, and decided I had time to shoot a few shots of them skiing on Charlie.

James ripping Charlie
Emily cranking some turns

Emily was trying to say she wasn’t skiing too well, but the photos proved otherwise and she was definitely ripping. After a couple of runs, I headed in to patrol to check on a few things going on in the aid room, and when I was done it was time for lunch.

Emily enjoying Good Time

After lunch, I headed out to make a few runs, and found Amber and Joe hanging out at the top of EPA. The wind was whipping pretty good, and even though the temperature was hovering right around freezing, it definitely felt cold.

Amber & Joe at EPA

The rest of the afternoon went smoothly, with a few more incidents to respond to, but nothing out of the ordinary. I headed over to Peak 2 and did a couple of laps prior to sweep, and a few minutes before 3:30 I headed over to Kris Kross to help Shaun with the closure.

Shaun closing Kris Kross

Once we had Kris Kross closed, Peak 2 sweep started a few minutes later, and then it was time for Upper Mountain to begin. I hiked to the top of EPA while Shaun stayed put at Kris Kross, and a few minutes later we headed down. I snapped a few photos of the closing crew before we headed out…

Silas & Edward chatting with Austin at sweep
EPA closing crew

Once the upper mountain was clear, we closed lower mountain, and then headed in for our evening meeting. As had become the norm for Patrol 2 this season, we followed our meeting with chips and some kind of dip (this time I brought some queso). We also had a nice offering of beers, sodas and bubbly’s, and it was nice to hang out with the patrol after a good day. My beer of choice for the evening was an Cryo Stash Imperial IPA from Hop Valley Brewing, and it tasted fine!

Cryo Stash from Hop Valley

A bit later, the crew started to filter out, and after taking care of the evening hill chief chores, I rounded up Shaun and Atticus (who rode up with us), and we hit the road, happy with another good day on mountain.

Shaun & Atticus ready to head out

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *